The importance of sports with Naadei Lyonnais

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Anne-Élisabeth: [00:00:00] Hi, everyone. My name is Anne-Élisabeth Bossé and welcome to the Beneva podcast: It happens to everyone. Because Beneva is such a great group of people, we've put together a network of contacts to create memorable encounters. Every episode, I get a guest to talk about what's happening in his or her life. We often hear about the importance of sport in our lives, whether it's for our health, to reduce stress, sleep better or simply to have fun. But what impact does sport have when you're young? How much can it transform our lives? Can it become an anchor? To talk about this, I welcome all-rounder Naadei Lyonnais, for whom sport has a real impact. I also had a great second guest. Unfortunately, curse you, she's sick today. Things that happen to everyone. But that's okay, because I'll be able to talk about my experience with sport. Let's leave it at that.


Anne-Élisabeth: [00:00:56] Naadei, I'm so happy to have you here today.

Naadei: [00:00:58] I'm so happy to be here!

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:01:00] Well, you're very sharp. I introduced you earlier as a jack-of-all-trades because, one, I love the expression, two, but it's a good way to describe you. I mean, you're an animator, you're a model, you're an actress, you played in Avant le crash recently, that's great. And today, we're here to talk about sport. Sport in you, you in sport.

Naadei: [00:01:17] Yeah, I think it's maybe something you wouldn't expect from us. I don't know.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:01:26] Well no, it's true that we've never really heard you talk about it in an interview before. I didn't know it was such a big part of your life. But before we get into, well, more deeply into the subject, I'd like to know a little bit about your little background, there, little Naadei, let's say, at school, what was it like?

Naadei: [00:01:43] Oh... Well, how much time do we have? Because it's been very rocky.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:01:47] We have three days. No, we don't.

Naadei: [0:01:50] I really enjoyed school. It's a period of my life from which I have super good memories. I had a lot of ease when it came to academics, but it's true that I moved around a lot from one school to another, I moved around a lot in my life.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:02:08] Yes, that's what struck me the most when I read about you, it's a lot of uprooting.

Naadei: [00:02:14] Yes, right, right. But it's had more positive effects than negative. I think I have a good ability to adapt now.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:02:21] Or at least it forged her.

Naadei: [00:02:22] Yes, in fact, I didn't have a choice. I think it's an ability that's super important in life. Because now, as an adult, I see how much I've been confronted with different types of environment, different types of personalities. It can be a challenge when you're used to working with just one type of person. I feel like you're letting me loose in a skate park or a training course... 

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:02:48] An informed babysitter course, whatever.

Naadei: [00:02:51] Look, absolutely. I have my certification, it's fine.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:02:54] I have it too. Yes!

Naadei: [00:02:55] Yes! 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:02:56] We have that in common, I'm happy.

Naadei: [0:02:57] We don't even have kids, but good babysitter.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:02:58] Just in case.

Naadei: [0:02:58] Do you understand?

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:02:59] Ready for anything.

Naadei: [0:03:00] Right. That makes it, it's something that came from that uprooting.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:03:05] Yes, you've turned it into a good tool. But there was a lot of instability, I think, in that period of your life too. Emotionally, I think you were... you used the expression time bomb at one point. Was it someone who had that, who had difficulty managing her emotions a little. You were a very charged teenager, as you might say.

Naadei: [00:03:25] Yeah, but because it's actually something that's been around since I was a kid, so I think it's really always been part of my DNA, so it wasn't necessarily a teenage crisis or...

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:03:33] Ah no, it's a personality trait.

Naadei: [00:03:35] Yes, it was really a personality trait, and not, you know, when I say explosive, it wasn't big tantrums or anything, but I think I lived my emotions quite intensely. Quite quickly, I realized that I wasn't experiencing my emotions in the same way as others. I could see a certain difference. Things made me sadder, I was happier.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:03:58] Everything was getting to you.

Naadei: [0:03:59] Yes, exactly. But you know, it wasn't enough to... you know, it wasn't enough to necessarily create intense questioning, but it was... I grew up with this perception of myself as being I'm not like the others.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:04:15] Yes, a little feeling of being abnormal.

Naadei: [00:04:17] Yes, that's it. And of course it was enhanced by the fact that I didn't look like anyone else either.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:04:23] Ah, well yes. And how did sport fit into that life? Was it to compensate for the uprooting or did it happen by chance? Tell me about it.

Naadei: [00:04:34] Listen, for me, sport has been... It's one of the most beautiful things that's ever happened to me in my life. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:04:40] My God, still...

Naadei: [0:04:41] Yes, yes, I think I've said before that it saved my life and I still mean it. It was huge for me. First of all, for reasons completely other than sports, but because it's like it gave me a sense of belonging that I had like no access to in any other way in anything else. Because, as we used to say, I was quite different. When I was 13, I lived in this body, so I was... Well, now I'm 5'10" and three-quarters. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:05:18] Ah yes, I hadn't noticed at all. No, well, yes.

Naadei: [00:05:19] I try not to say 5 feet 11 so as not to intimidate the suitors.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:05:23] Ah, I love it! It could have an emasculating effect on...

Naadei: [0:05:26] Right.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:05:26] No? It's not 5 feet 11, it's 5 feet 10 and three quarters.

Naadei: [00:05:28] Exactly.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:05:30] It's nothing to do with that. 

Naadei: [0:05:30] That's it. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:05:31] But anyway, OK, you were living in that body at 13.

Naadei: [00:05:32] That's it. In fact, it reconciled me with my body, finding a use for it, finding a value for it. In fact, there were things that my body was capable of doing, which, outside the sporting context, I perceived more as a handicap, that body. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:05:52] I understand.

Naadei: [0:05:53] Tsé? But then, it made me feel good to see the things I was able to do with it. You know, I started playing basketball. I was the opposite of what you'd consider an athletic person. I was...

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:06:05] Yes, that was my next question.

Naadei: [00:06:07] Hey, my God, I...

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:06:07] Where did you start from, anyway?

Naadei: [00:06:08] I'd go as far away as possible, you know. I was really the child, when the parents said go and play outside. It was a crisis. I didn't want to go out and play, I wanted to stay at home and in the comfort of my room, if possible, reading Christine Brouillette novels. And that was it. Do you understand?

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:06:26] Ditto with maybe a hot drink, a blanket.

Naadei: [0:06:31] If possible. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:06:32] It was really my basic energy. 

Naadei: [0:06:33] Yes.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:06:33] I understand you, yes.

Naadei: [00:06:35] So, playing outside, why when you're inside? It wasn't...

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:06:38] When you want to be inside.

Naadei: [00:06:40] Still, the question arises, is that it is. My mother, being an excellent mother, always told me I was full. You see, that's how she described my morphology. I was rather round, you see. She said I was full-bodied, that I had big bones, but I didn't necessarily feel welcome in this... that's right, it's like this sports setting.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:07:09] Were you in your skin or not quite?

Naadei: [00:07:11] I wouldn't necessarily say I felt bad about myself, but I keep coming back to this idea that I felt different. You know, all my other friends, you know, beautiful little girls who did gymnastics with their ponytails bouncing. So it was tricky. And I was a bit... I had a funny package, you know?

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:07:30] I like that. We're very similar in that respect. It speaks to me a lot, a lot. Me too, well, I wasn't so conscious of being uncomfortable in my skin, but I wasn't either... I didn't do gymnastics, I didn't do backflips when I was 11 at all, at all.

Naadei: [00:07:40] No, no, me neither. Here goes. A bit by chance, it was my catechism teacher who was also the basketball coach. Okay, look, we're talking about the 1990s in Rouyn-Noranda. So the context helped. Which encouraged me to give basketball a try. I mean, I could barely drag myself from one side of the court to the other. At first, I had no fun at all, but...

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:08:10] Well no, because you weren't good right away.

Naadei: [00:08:12] No, that's it. I don't like not being good right away. That's it.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:08:15] I understand. It's hard to be persistent when you start from far away.

Naadei: [00:08:20] Yes, it's hard to be persistent. Then it's hard to... For me, anyway, it was hard to accept that we'd say the concept of improvement of, you know, working hard to get something. Because there were a lot of things I was good at, like instinctively, you know, writing, reading, let's say the arts or anything that wasn't sports, in fact, that went pretty well. At school, as I said, I had a nice facility, but I didn't really know that, that concept of perseverance, then of hard work, then of setting goals, then of blood sweat and tears. It wasn't... no, that's it.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:09:03] And to love that state too.

Naadei: [0:09:05] That's it. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:09:05] Yes, that's often the trigger, I think. Learning to like it, whether it hurts a little or is hard. 

Naadei: [0:09:12] Right. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:09:14] Yes, I too don't come from... it's not my basic energy, again. 

Naadei: [0:09:16] That's it.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:09:17] Then what made you persevere? Was it the coach, was it the little voice inside you that said don't give up?

Naadei: [00:09:24] It's a bit embarrassing to say, but I think it's an ego thing at the core.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:09:28] Well no, but it's a motivation like any other.

Naadei: [00:09:31] Yes. Basically, I think I found it hard not to be good. I got angry, I told myself I'd never do that again and that it was boring. Eventually, it got to me. Then I wanted to be good. That's why I went back. And hey, I'm talking about basketball here, but it's very, very funny because I went through exactly the same thing with almost every sport I tried until very recently. You know, I'm jumping back in time here, but the first time someone dragged me into a yoga class, I was screaming my head off the whole time. It was hot. I didn't understand the names of the poses, I thought they were weird. You know, I was like a pretzel trying to look forward, it was like, what's the point... I found it difficult.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:10:18] It's very humiliating, the first yoga class.

Naadei: [0:10:19] Humiliating, you say!

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:10:18] Through pros because I went through the same thing. First of all, I had put on pajama bottoms to go. Honestly...

Naadei: [00:10:23] No, but I love it.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:10:25] People were all in Lululemon leggings, you know. I felt so much like a dog in a bowling alley. I totally understand. Yes, then it's that, then it's long before... In any case, yoga goes on for a long time before...

Naadei: [0:10:36] Yes, yes.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:10:36] That's it, you have to hang on.

Naadei: [00:10:38] Right. And you know, I mean, it almost hurts. And you know, I mean, it's because I was going through a process. I had the intention of relaxing, then centering myself, then going from there, zen. Then I'd leave there in... 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:10:51] Namasté.

Naadei: [0:10:54] Yeah, that's it. It brought out the regional language in me, and then that's it. Then finally, well, there was a period in my life when I had no choice but to try again because it was, you know, the only style of physical activity that was accessible. Basically, I had a boyfriend who was on tour, and we lived in a tour bus, so for several, several months, we had little, little, little periods to do physical activity. He really liked yoga, so I used to go too.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:11:28] And it's happening all over the place too.

Naadei: [00:11:31] Right. You arrive, you chat, you google, there you go, you get into a class, then finally well, eille, who would have thought, I started really tripping, then feeling the benefits. Then I relived the same thing I'd experienced when I was younger, i.e. working hard for something, then achieving a result that's even more rewarding than if you'd been good right away, you know.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:11:53] It's really inspiring what you're saying.

Naadei: [00:11:55] Yes... thank you, so you're fine.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:11:57] No, but that's because I think we don't really talk about that in sports. We talk about, you'll see, you'll feel so much better, then you'll see, we don't talk about how much it can really suck at first. I felt like an alien when I started doing sport. I'm sure it's harder for me than it is for others, because I never heard that kind of talk. Well, having heard you say "no", I found it really hard at first, it would have normalized my experience.

Naadei: [00:12:20] Absolutely, absolutely. And that's why I wanted to talk about it today. Because I find that often sport is like... I don't know the equivalent in French, but like gatekeepé a bit.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:12:34] A preserve? I'm not sure.

Naadei: [00:12:36] Well, anyway, it's kind of like protected. It's like it belongs to the athletes, you know. And I wasn't born a sportswoman, so it wasn't a foregone conclusion. In fact, sport belongs to everyone. The outdoors belongs to everyone. I started running two months ago, I ran for three weeks I hated it so much.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:13:01] Running is humiliating at the beginning too. You run 30 seconds, then you need to walk 30 seconds. Then you see the people next to you in the park who have gone further than you. 

Naadei: [0:13:07] Talking.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:13:09] They're talking in pairs.

Naadei: [00:13:09] Me, it's a group, it leaves at a certain time.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:13:13] They're talking to you.

Naadei: [0:13:13] They talk to me, and then I'm like, well, it's because you have to choose between the two. Because I won't be able to, you know. Then it made me so angry that I stopped. Then you see, I made my peace with it because I know it's going to work, then I'll do it again, then I'll start over. It did the same thing to me with the bike, it made me respect my rhythm, but I know that's what it's all about. I'm comfortable with the fact that it can take longer and that it may not be super easy for me. You see, I'm running and my knees are knocked in. I'm sweating pinch, I'm not elegant, you know, that's it.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:13:50] We can't really imagine that about you, by the way, which makes it all the more inspiring, I think.

Naadei: [0:13:54] You're fine.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:13:55] No, but it's true. But it's a bit of a fight against the feeling of inferiority that's a bit cyclical, you know. Because every time you start a new sport, it takes you back to little Naadei in basketball class. But at the same time, who remembers that hang in there.

Naadei: [00:14:10] Right. You know, I mean, I didn't get drafted to play in the United States. I never became an elite athlete. But I think that's what's important, that it's okay to do what you can. And it's not true that you're born... You know, the people you see at the gym who are excellent and who seem innate, well, yes, that's fine, good for them, but in fact, I think that sport can take many forms in any case. And for me, that's what it's all about. There's a whole other level for me too, which is a kind of sense of belonging. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:14:42] Yes, let's come back to that. 

Naadei: [0:14:44] Yes, which was quite unexpected because, as I said, I didn't fit the mold at all. It's as if my identity and my value were really calculated in relation not necessarily just to my performance, but to my level of effort. You know, in a team sport, if you give yourself on the field, no matter how many points you score, if your team feels that you've given yourself to the team and that you've given everything you've got and you finish the game drained, well, they're going to appreciate that and they're going to feel that... 

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:15:20] The appreciation you're going to receive is not proportional to your skills.

Naadei: [00:15:24] Not necessarily your skills, not your look, not your... you know, not your income. You know, me, we had a bit of misery at home, all that.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:15:33] Yes, it's democratic.

Naadei: [0:15:35] Tsé, it's really, if you leave everything you have on the field, everyone will be happy, tsé, everyone will be satisfied and you'll have earned your place on that team. And that was something that really made me feel good, you know.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:15:47] Really. Then what about basketball now? How far did you go for fun?

Naadei: [00:15:51] I played... It's a bit sad as a final, but in fact, I played until CEGEP. I was recruited to play at Cégep Montmorency. Actually, no, that's a lie. I was recruited to play at Cégep Maisonneuve, which is a little less good.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:16:06] A little less prestigious.

Naadei: [0:16:08] It's a little less prestigious. It's AA. But at the time, I was dating a guy who was 6 foot 9 and he got recruited to play in Montmorency and he asked for a package deal saying....

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:16:18] My girlfriend, she's coming with me.

Naadei: [0:16:20] I come if my girlfriend plays on the team and unfortunately, I really wasn't good enough to play on that team. So I sat out the whole season and that was the end of my great career.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:16:28] Thank you for sharing that with us. But there's something about... It makes me think because often too, when someone has a talent in something, we absolutely want it to go public or become a major success. Someone, I see it on Facebook. Somebody's doing some oil painting at home, then taking some photos. When's the show? We want to see you in a gallery.

Naadei: [0:16:47] It's so true.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:16:48] Maybe not, maybe it's not a failure to do it for yourself. Also, being competitive by nature, I had a hard time detaching my performances from a goal. At some point, I realized: no, no, you're not going to be an athlete in this lifetime, and that's okay. That's not the point.

Naadei: [00:17:03] I think it's so true what you're saying.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:17:04] Do you understand? You know, you have to reconcile the idea of doing it for yourself, for what it brings you, not for the recognition it might bring.

Naadei: [00:17:12] Absolutely, absolutely. And it gives you a freedom that's so, so important to not impose this on yourself, to not impose results on yourself, to not impose on yourself to make a career out of it or anything. You see, I rediscovered the pleasure of doing lots of things when I realized that eille, that's not what you're going to do in life. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:17:30] No, that's it.

Naadei: [0:17:31] Since I've been strumming my guitar at home, and writing little tunes on the side that will never be released, I've rediscovered the pleasure of making music. You know, I think that's the same thing with sports, it's okay to do it even if you're not a top athlete.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:17:46] Well yes. Actually, my question is: do you want to be good or competitive, or both? There's a kind of micro nuance there.

Naadei: [00:17:51] I know what you mean.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:17:53] Do you want your team to win a gold medal or do you want A plus in the big Cosmos? 

Naadei: [0:17:57] I'm very A plus.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:17:59] It's clear. You're A plus too?

Naadei: [00:17:59] I'm very A plus. Well, I like winning, but I'm still a good winner, a good loser.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:18:07] Yes, that's it. That's not where it comes in.

Naadei: [00:18:07] Well, on the whole, yes, that's right. I'm not the person who's going to get mad at the referee when there's 15 seconds left on the shot clock. Because the call was... Tsé, that's fine, but there's a good chance I'll be very angry with myself if I'm the one who missed the last shot or tsé, you know what I mean?

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:18:24] Yes, that's what you impose on yourself.

Naadei: [00:18:25] Yes.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:18:26] Let's make peace, eh, gently, with this? Not good, damned not good. You're no good. 

Naadei: [0:18:30] It doesn't look good, yes. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:18:35] I call it the tyrannical superego. 

Naadei: [0:18:35] Oh, I agree.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:18:38] Yes, yes, that's it. It's boring, isn't it? To fight against it.

Naadei: [00:18:41] Because it's so corny.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:18:43] Well, that's because it leads nowhere.

Naadei: [00:18:44] No, absolutely.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:18:45] It's not by whipping yourself that you'll run faster. 

Naadei: [0:18:46] No.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:18:47] I don't know where this thought that it has to hurt comes from.

Naadei: [00:18:50] Then in my case, actually, it's that it makes you run slower, often.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:18:54] Ah, well, actually, that's it.

Naadei: [00:18:54] Tsé, it's because running while flagellating yourself, it certainly slows down the pace a bit, tsé.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:18:58] The image is very strong.

Naadei: [0:18:59] That's it.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:19:01] I don't want to hit the nail on the head about moving, perpetual uprooting, that's not my point, but I just want to draw a parallel with yoga. You said earlier that the great thing about yoga is that you can practice anywhere. You can bring your mat, you can do it in the park, you can sign up in Seattle, you can do yoga.

Naadei: [0:19:15] Right.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:19:15] But basketball, there's that too, let's admit, from one school to another, you always had, it's rare a school that doesn't have a basketball team.

Naadei: [00:19:21] Right. When I first came to Montreal, I chose my school based on the basketball team.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:19:27] Because you knew it was your joker. I play basketball, so I'll always be able to get away with something.

Naadei: [00:19:33] Right. In fact, as we were saying to each other, it was really linked to my feeling of belonging because I knew that when you're ready to work hard for your team, automatically, you earn your place at the heart of the gang, you know. And I mean, the bonds that are created within a sports team, precisely because of that suffering, because of common efforts.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:19:52] Yes, everyone's sweating over the same thing.

Naadei: [00:19:55] For the same cause, you know, there's something really beautiful and important too in terms of values, I think, that it conveys, to be able to forget yourself for the sake of a common cause. Well, forgetting oneself, we agree. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:20:10] To dedicate oneself at least.

Naadei: [0:20:11] But to dedicate, that's it. You know, all that, it's something, it's part of the things I learned through sports. And it allowed me, from one school to the next, to attach myself to that anchor point, and to know that I would somehow find my place, you know.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:20:29] It did that to me as a teenager, with theater too, because I was also in my solitude, in my novels, in my business. And I hadn't experienced being part of a group, my place within a group. I wasn't confronted with that, the fact that just as if you're playing music in an orchestra or it's a theater, theater isn't a solo, you take your place, but you don't have all the space. But your contribution is important. But hey, finding the right balance in all that. That's important in life.

Naadei: [00:20:55] It's so important, it's part of the lessons, or at least for me, that have served me well. There's one in particular that has stayed with me. It was a coach who said to me, he said it in English, but he said "Perception is reality". Because, in fact, during practice, I tended to be like that just because I was catching my breath, and then he'd say to me "When I talk to you, I don't want you to have your arms crossed". Then I'd say: well, Ghislain, I mean, I...

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:21:22] Don't take it personal.

Naadei: [0:21:24] No, no, that's my position. Then he'd say "Yes, but other people's perception is reality. So in fact, if what I get from your posture is that you're closed, well, you have to consider that for me, that's my reality". And that really sparked something in me. There are lots of little nuggets like that that I've picked up from coaches and people on my team that have really forged the person I am now.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:21:53] Well no, it must give you so many tools to be an animator, to be a model, to be an actress, that's all it is, to respond to other people's perceptions. If you can't adapt to that, you're done.

Naadei: [00:22:06] Absolutely. Then just, that's it, in interpersonal relationships, to be aware of what you're giving off, even if for you, it's not necessarily what you want to say. To be able to understand that, oops, maybe on the other side, the signal isn't received in the same way. I think it's a lesson that, when you learn it at 13, you seem to have a little... that's right, a little head start.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:22:27] That's what I was going to say. Life has been good to me because I was forced to do sports at some point. But it came very late. It happened three years ago. The director of Plan B called me up and said, "I'm thinking of you for my next heroine. However, I'd like you to be in great shape. Then we were in the middle of a pandemic. It was really there... I was really leaving... It was my worst. I had a rib to climb. Then production put me in touch with a coach called Christian Maurice, who completely changed my perception of sport too. And then, because for me too, going into a gym felt like my shoulders were up to my ears. It reminded me of everything. It was like my high school traumas were coming back. I was so out of shape. Then he managed to make it a personal experience, to take away the pressure to perform and normalize the difficulty. I said, "At some point, are you going to stop being hard? He goes, "If it stops being hard, you're in the wrong place. That's what happens with sport too: if you want to improve, if you want to keep going down that road, you always have to challenge yourself. I haven't stopped training, and I'm still in contact with Christian Maurice.

Naadei: [00:23:39] You've integrated this into your life, and then you've been training ever since?

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:23:42] Yes! Since 2020... is that it? 2021, I think, yes. I'm not going to see Christian every week like I used to for Plan B, then my loads, I was really imposing on myself... It was very intense. But I've stopped making fun of people who do that too. Because I also remember that at one point I said to Christian... because Christian eats superbly well and takes care of his health perhaps more than the average person. I said, well, what's your Friday night going to be? Eat quinoa croquettes and drink sparkling water?

Naadei: [0:24:12] We have that tendency, don't we? Funny.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:24:13] He said, "Yes, it's really loser to take care of yourself, isn't it? It's a real loser to want to be healthy, Anne-Élisabeth, isn't it?"

Naadei: [0:24:18] Ah, that picks up, huh?

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:24:21] Then it looks like I did this. You do... There's no mockery to be made of taking care of yourself. It's a form of self-care, sport. In any case, there are some little threads that have come together in my head.

Naadei: [00:24:31] Yes. It's as if it justifies the fact that we don't integrate it into our lives. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:24:36] But that was my feeling of inferiority talking, for sure.

Naadei: [00:24:39] Well, that's it. That's it, but it really impresses me, though, that you've been able to do it. Because me, I apologize, another Anglicism there, but the sustainability of that, of being able to last. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:24:48] Perdurer, yes.

Naadei: [0:24:51] Yes, I'm really a sprint girl, not a marathon girl.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:24:52] Oh, my God, my God, I've said that line before.

Naadei: [0:24:54] We're the same. We have the same hair.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:24:56] Yes, no, but it's true. I want it to go fast. I want concrete results, I want...

Naadei: [0:24:59] Yes, right.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:24:59] That's it, I want to be good right away. But sport isn't for me.

Naadei: [00:25:02] It's not that.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:25:03] It makes me very humble about it. And finally, I always finish podcasts the same way. You know, you've shared them with me. 

Naadei: [0:25:10] Yes.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:25:11] I always ask the guest if there's anyone they'd like to pay tribute to, if there's someone who's been a big influence in their journey, sometimes yes, sometimes no. I'm asking you.

Naadei: [00:25:19] Yes. Well, actually, unfortunately, it was a coach who left us the year he was coaching us. Unfortunately, his name is Ghislain Hamel and he passed away. But he was a person who had a huge, huge impact on my life. He made me not want to become, hey, my God, I'm getting emotional, it's a pain. Not to become the stereotype I was basically stuck in. He really gave me the tools, in fact, to become the person I could become instead of the person others expected me to become. And that's a huge gift. And no, sport can really elevate a person, and it did for me. When I say it saved my life, I mean it.

Anne-Élisabeth: [00:26:15] I'm speechless. It was extremely touching. Ghislain, Ghislain arms crossed there?

Naadei: [0:26:19] Ghislain arms crossed. 

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:26:21] A thought for Ghislain. 

Naadei: [0:26:22] Ghislain arms crossed.

Anne-Élisabeth: [0:26:23] Thank you so much for sharing. Thank you, it was really a wonderful podcast. I came out of it really moved and I felt very understood and it inspired me a lot what you said.

Naadei: [00:26:36] Ah, you're fine. I'm so glad. Thank you, Naadei. It was really a pleasure.

Sports can bring out the best in people and change their lives. Just ask Naadei Lyonnais and Anne-Élisabeth. They discuss the lessons they learned, like the satisfaction they get from their efforts. Inspiring!

Animation : Anne-Élisabeth Bossé

Guest: Naadei Lyonnais

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